If you’ve recently taken PUR3000 (Public Relations) or are enrolled in that course now, you’ve heard about some of the ways that public relations and today’s social media can meet head-on. Sometimes, as companies large and small have found out, it just doesn’t work. For example, the text describes just what went wrong when McDonald’s launched the #McDStories campaign on Twitter. The company’s tactic, which was intended to highlight positive stories, instead became a lightning rod for customer complaints. Others, though, have learned from the mistakes of McDonald’s and similar companies. When used well, Twitter can be a valuable medium for spreading the word about a product, service, idea, or destination.
Today, converged communicators have a chance to see one of these campaigns in live action. The city of Jacksonville has unveiled a special sweepstakes with the #ILoveJax hashtag on social media accounts. The grand prize for non-residents is a two-night trip to Jacksonville along with tickets to a Jaguars game, a round of golf, and dinner at an area restaurant. For residents, the grand prize includes Jaguars and concert tickets, as well as a gift certificate. Already, the #ILoveJax hashtag is beginning to pop up this afternoon across Twitter. It’s a fresh example of how social media can be the spark to ignite a public relations drive.